Using sign language and adopting deaf culture gave me efficient tools to understand what identity – linguistic identity and emotional language, in particular – really means.

It is crucial for young people in situations such as mine that their families and environment recognize, accept and support the needs and insights of the growing deaf child.

A deaf child can be strongly influenced by a positive attitude toward sign language and deaf culture while, conversely, failing to appreciate the importance of sign language and not using it with the growing child and adolescent can undermine and destroy the essential development of language, identity and socio-emotional skills.